Let's Get Honest! Blog: Absolutely Uncommon Analysis of Family & Conciliation Courts' Operations, Practices, & History

'A Different Kind of Attention Develops Sound Judgment' | 'Suppose I'm Right Here?…' (posted 3/23 & 3/5/2014). Over 680 posts, Public-Interest Investigative Blogging On These Matters Since 2009.

Family Courts, Part of Government= Business. Part II, Details:

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I just posted (Part I) too much reminder about Welfare Reform and how the Child Support Enforcement policies aren’t really just about Child Support Enforcement, citing two Congressional Research Services studies, and the commentary from a Huffington Post blog which also summarizing Dangerous HHS programs.
Two fathers’ rights activitist explained how the system HAS to expand fto feed itself, and only works if it separates children from good parents.
The first Dangerous to Women & Children program named in the blog, thereafter, was the Child Support Enforcement.   I’d have to agree — because as part of the TANF Block Grants to States, these just have too many diversions, and are too tempting to too many people, and people who are able to divorce without hating their kids by abandoning them financially — or so hating the opposite parent they completely cut off communications absent any real violence or criminal behavior — are no concern of these multi-million$$ initiatives.
And also because people have been killed over this matter, citing that matter.  It is dangerous, in other words, to go after child support from fathers who previously have demonstrated they were angry, out of control, resentful, perhaps violent, misogynist, or expressed intent to punish women.  Trying to make us all just “play nice for the sake of the kids” is not really about the kids.  It’s about ever-expanding government institutions.
Not only are they dangerous to women & children, they are insulting to them — and to the many fathers who don’t need a kick in the pants, or a bribe, to take care of their own children.
They are mostly (in my opinion) about political clout, with a little extra added anti-woman kick in the pants from the religious side, who has never, really, endorsed single motherhood, or objected seriously enough to abuse of women and children within their own ranks.  That is evidently not about to change much, given how strong the religious element is in both government and in many HHS departments.  Did I mention the US Supreme Court?

Religion in the Supreme Court, In Both Houses of Congress, and (in general), In Politics*

*this last link just a reminder, for fun, maybe some perspective….of the similarities between joining (or, being born into?) a religion and a political party:

  • These charters and beliefs are claimed by both entities to be divinely inspired.
  • Both change these charters and beliefs as times change, as technology improves, as law requires it, and as opposing knowledge and books become more accessible to the public at large.
  • Both are registered with the State via their Articles of Incorporation.
  • Both write and re-write history; and then edit and interpret their own writings.
  • They are both a form of control, both in political and moral correctness.
  • Members of both fear excommunication and public ridicule for questioning or acting against these chartered beliefs.
  • Political parties make the laws of the land and command consent, while religions teach that members must follow the “law of the land” as God commands.
  • Both give power to otherwise powerless men, who dress in robes and judge all people…
  • Yet both are well known to hide some of their deeds in the dark; without disclosure, and even against the very ethics they set for themselves.

Some of this list (I’m picking & choosing) are relevant to the post here, especially the next two:

  • Both claim to be non-profit…

  • And both avoid taxes on their for-profit ventures.

WHICH THE CAFRs will show, and some of the insets below prove:

  • Both have been caught many times over in pedophilia related activities
  • Both are very protective of this fact and the people involved in these activities

PAUSE to VALIDATE & ILLUSTRATE. Sorry, but:

This appears to be true, and is not amusing, or anything close to it.

(THIS IS RE: JUDGE JACK B. WEINSTEIN CHAMPIONING THE RIGHTS OF VIEWERS OF CHILD PORN)

Recently, Spire Law Firm filed a dramatic claim for $43 trillion damages relating to mortgage foreclosures (banksters, Rico, Mortgage foreclosures, etc.) which I am probably going to blog.  But it came under Federal Judge Jack B. Weinstein, Eastern District, NY, who assigned it to a Magistrate. According to the article below, Judge Weinstein must be over 88 yrs old now.

So I looked him up (again; he’s very well known) and was shocked to find a recent record of him defending a married father of five caught exchanging child porn (thousands of images).   Here are some of the letters to the editor (NYT) in 2010.  Apparently this judge believes that if no children are actually abused by the viewer, no children are seriously at risk.  That some children were in the PHOTOS doesn’t seem to have been an issue, i.e., the man was consuming child porn.

Judge Weinstein takes on Child Pornography Laws (May 21, 2010, A.G. Sulzberger, NYT):

The man he has spent three years trying to save from a long incarceration is Pietro Polizzi, a married father of five who collected more than 5,000 graphic pictures of children. If prosecuted in a New York State court, he would have faced a maximum prison sentence of four years. Instead, in federal court, he faced a minimum of five years and a recommended sentence of 11 to 14 years. Because of Judge Weinstein’s intervention, he remains free as he awaits another trial.

I don’t see Judge Weinstein as a judge,” Mr. Polizzi said during an interview as tears rolled down his face. “I see him as my father. He helps people. He doesn’t destroy lives the way the prosecutor has. He’s the one who is going to set me free from the court.”

(Bad court & prosecutor, and law: GOOD judge, the fathers’ friend….. Whoever’s filming the kids already helped destroy THEIR lives.   Deal with it, Dad.  You got girls??  !!)  From the same article:

Judge Weinstein declared that Mr. Polizzi had a constitutional right to have a jury know the punishment that would accompany a guilty verdict, a right he said he had violated. He pledged to inform the next jury of the mandatory minimum sentence. That idea, floated by a federal judge in Manhattan several years earlier in another child pornography case but rejected on appeal, would give jurors the option of refusing to convict if the punishment seemed disproportionate, as several jurors had indicated they believed it was in Mr. Polizzi’s case.

Did it occur to anyone where those images came from, and that one of them ‘t was someone else’s child?  And that you don’t DO that sick stuff to kids?  Or is it really OK?  Apparently not really.  After all, ..they were just looking.

I think, by and large, so many people are involved in this that an average jury is likely to have some viewers.   Same thing with DV.  This is why I want us to just focus on the finances.  The amount of unbelievable distress and anguish caused when child molestation DOES occur, to both the kids and the parent that, thanks to the family courts, cannot stop this, is unbelievable.  I also think that this issues is tied into more marriage breakups than is commonly admitted.

Moreover, this same administration is pushing marriage to reduce poverty and increase the safety (from child abuse is included) of minor children.  I personally am glad I was not married to this guy, and would rather support my kids alone (deal with it) than live and interact daily with a man with this habit.

However, the judge felt otherwise, and it was actually quite a hot topic!  A (male) blogger from Indiana argues in for the judge’s position…   Here, a Washington lawyer (Feinberg) assessing damages for the Sandusky case was assigned by Weinstein (Back in 1984) to also mediate damages for the 250,000 damages for Viet Nam Vets exposed to defoliant Agent Orange.  [[I have a relative who died from this…]  Article from The Daily Beast, last June, 2012]:

As he explains in his new book Who Gets What, his task is to maximize prompt, fair payouts and minimize dilatory litigation.  It’s no surprise that frazzled officials at Penn State University recently consulted the 66-year-old Massachusetts native, a former Judiciary Committee staffer to the late Sen. Edward Kennedy, about setting up a fund to pay off the victims of convicted pedophile Jerry Sandusky.

“I gave them some ideas. They said, ‘Let us think about it.’ Never heard another word from them,” Feinberg says in his pungent New England accent.. . .

Feinberg—whose boutique law firm specializes in mediation and dispute resolution—has been in this unusual line of work since 1984, when federal judge Jack Weinstein appointed him to mediate the $180 million settlement for 250,000 Vietnam War veterans who were exposed to the defoliant Agent Orange.

FACE  IT — most people (in the USA) are not going to want OPEN public identification with endorsing viewing child porn, molesting children, (or domestic violence), but nor are they really willing to accept what stopping these as INDUSTRIES would really mean.  There are too many counter-arguments.

SO — let’s just get back to the economic honesty aspect; perhaps we can all agree (even those who feel an uncomfortable male — or female — bonding at confronting certain kinds of violence and abuse towards others)…that at least it’s wrong to steal from the public and launder the money, or to mis-represent actual needs in order to accumulate more assets; which the CAFRs will reveal, IF studied (or at least located!) what those are.  These are where special funds of all sorts are revealed, and local courts’ etc. pay HAS to show up on them.

More on Religion and Politics….

  • Both have public relations officers to handle the public’s outrage at these actions so as to ensure the continuity of the corporation…
  • And both are protected from these crimes and from any major public scrutiny or punishment by the court system (BAR) and in the mainstream media (Public Opinion).  (obviously, cases in point, above)
  • Both rely on the ignorance of their members with regards to their business related and political activities…
  • And both despise watch-dog groups. (too bad….)
  • Both accept and rely on donations. 
  • Both have leaders that wear expensive suits and receive very good pensions.
  • Both promise hope and change to the poor and working class, but never quite deliver.
  • Both offer a welfare system that’s never quite enough to really make a difference in society… other than to maintain the poverty level.
  • “In God We Trust” is the credo of both – after all, it says so on the thing they both worship the most.

Biographies of Current Justices of the Supreme Court

Appointed by, in order:  Bush2, Reagan, Reagan, Bush1, Clinton, Clinton, Obama, Obama (Sotomayor, Kagan), retirees appointed by Reagan, Bush1, Ford (per this list).  Not to be crude, but how about an atheist or so?  Or aren’t protestants smart enough – or do they prefer to stay in the megachurch, corporate wealth (i.e., direct-marketing), faith-based area of running the government?
Faith shouldn’t matter if we’re all ethical, able to reason and respect the rule of law (ha, ha….).  But, unfortunately since 2001 (not to mention 1996), it actually does matter — a LOT.
(per Factmonster)
Service Birth
Name, state Assoc. Justice Chief Justice Yrs Date Died Religion
Antonin Scalia, DC 1986– N.J. 1936 Roman Catholic
Anthony M. Kennedy, Calif. 1988– Calif. 1936 Roman Catholic
Clarence Thomas, DC 1991– Ga. 1948 Roman Catholic
Ruth Bader Ginsburg, DC 1993– N.Y. 1933 Jewish
Stephen G. Breyer, Mass. 1994– Calif. 1938 Jewish
John G. Roberts, DC 2005– N.Y. 1955 Roman Catholic
Samuel A. Alito, Jr.,N.J. 2006– N.J. 1950 Roman Catholic
Sonia SotomayorN.Y. 2009– N.Y. 1954 Roman Catholic
Elena KaganN.Y. 2010– N.Y. 1960 Jewish
Regarding the years 2006, 2009, 2010, there was a little changing of the guards, I see:
Sandra Day O’Connor, Ariz. 1981–2006 25 Tex. 1930 Episcopal
David H. Souter, N.H. 1990–2009 19 Mass. 1939 Episcopal
John Paul Stevens, Ill. 1975–2010 Ill. 1920 Protestant
OK, so let’s go to Congress.  this is not the most recent Pew Forum on Religion and Public life, but it has some graphs, and some commentary….  Just for the record, the religious in sentiment are likely to go after those marriage/fatherhood/abstinence, parenting education (etc.) type grants, along with and including no doubt some who also like the lax oversight of the grants after they get down to the state level.
Faith on the Hill:  members of the 112th Congress from Pew Forum on religion & The Public Life:

According to a summer 2010 survey by the Pew Forum and the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, 61% of Americans say it is important for members of Congress to have strong religious beliefs. This view is expressed by eight-in-ten white evangelical Protestants (83%); seven-in-ten black Protestants (71%); and at least six-in-ten white mainline Protestants (64%), white Catholics (66%) and Hispanic Catholics (61%). Even among self-identified atheists and agnostics, 15% say it is important for members of Congress to have strong religious beliefs.

The religious makeup of the chambers of the 112th congress graphic

Footnotes

1 All six members of Congress who decline to specify an affiliation are incumbents and are counted in this analysis in the “Don’t Know/Refused” category. In addition, one member of the House of Representatives, Rep. Pete Stark (D-Calif.), identifies his religion as Unitarian but has also said he is an atheist (does not believe in God). {{PETE STARK, AGE 80, DIDN’T MAKE IT PAST THE LAST ROUND 11/6/2012}} He is counted in this analysis in the “Other Faiths” category, which includes Unitarianism. If he were counted, instead, as an atheist and added to the six members in the “Don’t know/Refused” category, the portion of members of Congress who either do not specify a faith or are unaffiliated with any particular faith would still be about 1%.(return to text)

2 The Mormon category includes those who identify their faith as Mormon (14 members) as well as those who identify with the Community of Christ (one member).(return to text)   {{OBVIOUSLY UTAH IS GOING TO RESULT IN SOME MORMONS.  THE PREVIOUS CONGRESS FROM UTAH (BOTH HOUSES) WAS 100% MORMON;

Here’s not the most current list, but at least a list.  Why not put this on the table?  While these are not today’s Congress (at least not all of them), it does tell who was passing legislation that today’s Congress and House of Reps will inherit. I notice Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona, who was shot during a public speaking list, is on there.  Was it her being female or being Jewish in Arizona that was part of the problem, not including the nutcase that did this?  (Peace to her and her family!!)….

Anyhow:

SECTION II.  PART II….

RE: WHERE IS THIS MONEY GOING?

In FACT, IF THIS POWERFUL FORCE IS MY GOVERNMENT,

SHOW ME THE MONEY — ALL OF IT — WHERE IS IT?

re:  CAFRs I have links to the right — Walter Burien explains this better than I do (How even a commodities traders learned about “the rest of the pie”).
So, yes, good question.  Where IS this money going?  According to its own governmental standards, the format in place to report this since 1947 appears to be the CAFR, at least for states.  For smaller units that actual US States that didn’t want to comply, they were welcome, apparently, to not comply and forfeit their drug of choice, federal payments (through the states or directly, I guess).

I thought, why not start at the top?  So, I looked for the “Comprehensive Audited Financial Report” (Year 2011) for the United States of America.  Why shouldn’t I?  Apparently, as a Citizen, I am a “shareholder” in this enterprise, and as it considers my labor, my kids, and my being its property — we are all schooled and lectured every day, and choose politicians and Presidents on the basis of what to do about the debt, and how to create more JOBS (translation:  while building assets and wealth for corporations, be taxed on our labor to further contribute to all kinds of funds (including funds established for our future welfare we’ve entrusted to management by our own overlords).

It’s relevant to OUR welfare to know what people (running the business which is called “government”) who claim they have it in mind, are actually doing.

All of this pretty well boils down to “assets and liabilities.”  So, what are the assets and liabilities of the country I’m a citizen of, by virtue of being a citizen of a certain State?

And where would I find that?  Because PART — a BIG part — of the business (government) of this country and that state, logically speaking, are the courts.

So I went looking, and while I didn’t yet find that CAFR, I did find a document I believe we should make a note of:

Terms to remember:

  • “GAO” (Government Accountability Office)
  • “OMB” (Office of Management and Budget)
  • the US Treasury
  • Annual Financial Statements (which are budgetary tools) vs.
  • COMPREHENSIVE Annual Financial Statements (which state net worth — everything — since the beginning of any government body).

Before presenting it, though, I want to show what happened AFTER someone who looked at a state CAFR found (I believe it was him) the $54 million extra funds that preserved the imminent closure of 70 California State parks, which had been threatened.  Department head resigned, there was clear evidence of coverup, and then apparently (apart from this one guy) the momentum or will to follow through on this job was pretty much lost.

To put this in California  (the “Golden State”) terms, it’s like discovering the motherlode, the vein that leads to gold, understanding who might be prospecting for it and profiting from it (although this one being a man-made motherlode of information) and then going back to sleep.

This CAFR information is the “motherlode” and some initial prospectors have begun.  I am also posting STATE level (and a few key city) such reports over at the Cold,Hard.Fact$ blog.  Any help digging these up and submitting links (labeled in similar format) on comments would be appreciated.  I already have a link to the links and am going beyond that and setting the table for those hungry for economic truth to sit down and start eating.  Or at least looking at the menu.  Once you get the taste, the usual menu of lies, coverups and dissembling (I am trusting/hoping) will be less tasty, and the consequence of the bastardized (economic) taste bud, so to speak, will turn sour.

EXAMPLE:  The Benefits of Paying Attention (as opposed to, going back to sleep) is a matter of opportunity, initial resources, and knowing “what time of day” it is — a business sense.

It being a weekend, please look down.  Are you wearing blue jeans today, or are your kids?  Do you recognize this?

Mark ImageMark Image

Levi Strauss came to SF during the gold rush, age 24, with “a small supply of drygoods,” and a brother with a store back in NY.  He listened to feedback from a prospector, understood that miners are going to need overalls, and ACTED ON THIS KNOWLEDGE.  “Levi Strauss” got a patent in 1873 for denim, and we got blue jeans (everything inside the next box is just an illustration of what can happen when people are paying attention!)  We also got, in buying them, to help contribute to Levi Strauss & Co’s current 47% profit margin.

Please read, and ask — what’s the “profit margin” on a quarterly (let alone annual) basis of the United States Government?  Of the State governments?  Of all the inbetween government entities?  We are part of that profit margin (despite being continually lectured on what debt we have).  Like this company, our governments have operating revenue, profit margins, investments overseas (and others investing in us FROM overseas).  These governments also have OPERATING expenses (and budgets) which they expect the public to pay every year (or cut product = services delivery) without revealing what the corporate buffer really is.  These governments have their NET income (which is often a loss somehow) but they also have GROSS profit (called assets) which they don’t want to talk about.

And because the government itself is not subject to the SEC, they don’t have to report it in this detail to shareholders.  They do have to report it to each other and to Congress, to an extent — but I have a question:  When they don’t (or manage it badly, decade after decade) who is going to prosecute?  The U.S. Attorney General?

More to the point, how did we get to the point, as a population, of not even WANTING to know about this, or realizing that, perhaps, we could?

In 1853, the California gold rush was in full swing, and everyday items were in short supply. Levi Strauss, a 24-year-old German immigrant, left New York for San Francisco with a small supply of dry goods with the intention of opening a branch of his brother’s New York dry goods business. Shortly after his arrival, a prospector wanted to know what Mr. Levi Strauss was selling. When Strauss told him he had rough canvas to use for tents and wagon covers, the prospector said, “You should have brought pants!,” saying he couldn’t find a pair of pants strong enough to last.

Denim Blue Jeans

Levi Strauss had the canvas made into waist overalls. Miners liked the pants, but complained that they tended to chafe. Levi Strauss substituted a twilled cotton cloth from France called “serge de Nimes.” The fabric later became known as denim and the pants were nicknamed blue jeans.

Levi Strauss & Company

In 1873, Levi Strauss & Company began using the pocket stitch design. Levi Strauss and a Reno Nevada-based Latvian tailor by the name of Jacob Davis co-patented the process of putting rivets in pants for strength. On May 20, 1873, they received U.S.Patent No.139,121. This date is now considered the official birthday of “blue jeans.”Levi Strauss asked Jacob Davis to come to San Francisco to oversee the first manufacturing facility for “waist overalls,” as the original jeans were known as.

The two-horse brand design was first used in 1886. The red tab attached to the left rear pocket was created in 1936 as a means of identifying Levi’s jeans at a distance. All are registered trademarks that are still in use.  (USPTO.gov life trademarks to Levi Strauss, below).

Serial Number Reg. Number Word Mark Check Status Live/Dead
1 78811081 3309476 LEVI STRAUSS SIGNATURE TSDR LIVE
2 73176884 1140853 LEVI STRAUSS & CO.SAN FRANSISCO,CAL. ORIGINAL RIVETED QUALITY CLOTHING. X X PATENTED MAY 20 1873 TSDR LIVE
3 73112100 1095986 LEVI STRAUSS & CO. SAN FRANCISCO, CAL. ORIGINAL RIVETED QUALITY CLOTHING. XX TRADE MARK PATENDED MAY 20, 1873 TSDR LIVE
4 73022316 1030033 LEVI STRAUSS & CO. SAN FRANSISCO, CAL. ORIGINAL RIVETED QUALITY CLOTHING XX TRADEMARK PATENTED MAY 20, 1873 TSDR LIVE
5 72382313 0928351 LEVI STRAUSS & COS.F.CAL TSDR LIVE

Now this corporation has its own foundations and is socially active

About Levi Strauss & Co.

Levi Strauss & Co. is one of the world’s largest brand-name apparel companies and a global leader in jeanswear. The company designs and markets jeans, casual wear and related accessories for men, women and children under the Levi’s®, Dockers®, Signature by Levi Strauss & Co.TM, and Denizen® brands. Its products are sold in more than 110 countries worldwide through a combination of chain retailers, department stores, online sites, and a global footprint of more than 2,300 franchised and company-operated stores. Levi Strauss & Co.’s reported fiscal 2011 net revenues were $4.8 billion. For more information, go to http://levistrauss.com.

Again, about 150 years ago, someone was paying good attention to market trends, and taking feedback from a prospector.  Also, as a public-traded  company (it has investors), Levi & Strauss must file with the SEC.  It HAS to

PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(D) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

SEC filings as a public-traded corporation (FYI, a Delaware Corporation based in San Francisco, CA).  It posts its quarterly earnings in millions — 3rd quarter 2012 was (ex. 99.1).  LOOKING AT SOME OF THE MANAGEMENT ANALYSIS, we see they are paying close attention to where the revenues are, impact of currency differences, individual brands & initiatives in which parts of the globe, and revenues versus net income.

I note the profit margin of 47%  – how many of us have a 47% profit from what we have been investing in our own government year after year?  Why isn’t it producing — or required to produce — reports of this detail for us, while managing allegedly our money for our benefit?

LEVI STRAUSS & CO. ANNOUNCES THIRD-QUARTER 2012 FINANCIAL RESULTS

Net Revenue Decline Reflects Global Environment and Strategic Actions

Company Reports Significantly Improved Cash Flow and Lower Net Debt

SAN FRANCISCO (October 9, 2012) – Levi Strauss & Co. (LS&Co.) today announced financial results for the third quarter ended August 26, 2012, and filed its third-quarter 2012 results on Form 10-Q with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

($ = millions)

Three Months Ended  August 26, 2012 ~ August 28, 2011

Net revenues             $1,101                 ~   $1,204

Net income               $    28             ~  $     32

Third quarter 2012 net revenues declined 9 percent on a reported basis and 4 percent on a constant currency basis. These results reflect the ongoing global economic challenges and actions the company took to drive improvements in its future performance, including the decisions to license the Levi’s® brand boys business in the Americas and phase out the Denizen® brand in Asia. Despite the notable revenue decline, net income dropped only $4 million, reflecting an improved operating margin.

“While the third quarter was impacted by the continuing difficult global macro-economic environment, we are very focused on what we can control: our product innovation and marketing programs, the key strategic choices we make and addressing our underlying cost structure,” said Chip Bergh, president and chief executive officer of Levi Strauss & Co. “Our goal is to prioritize efforts behind our core business to drive sustainable, profitable growth and drive shareholder value. During the third quarter, we began to execute several initiatives against our goals, including exiting the Denizen® brand from Asia and licensing the U.S. Levi’s® boys business.”

_ _ _ _ _ _ _

Gross profit in the third quarter declined to $521 million compared with $569 million for the same period in 2011, reflecting unfavorable impacts of $45 million of currency effects and $25 million associated with the company’s decision to phase out its Denizen® brand in Asia.  Third quarter gross margin of 47.3 percent was flat to prior year. Excluding the currency and the  Denizen® mpacts, gross margin improved, reflecting increased sales fromcompany’s retail stores, a decline in sales to lower-margin channels and lower cotton costs.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _

Selling, general and administrative (SG&A) expenses for the third quarter declined to $434 million from $489 million in the same period of 2011, inclusive of favorable currency effects of $22 million. The decline in SG&A was primarily driven by a reduction in advertising activities in some markets and a difference in timing of campaigns; organization and distribution expenses also declined during the quarter. Partially offsetting these declines, the company recorded a $19 million impairment charge on its owned distribution center in Japan due to a decision to outsource to a third-party in that market.

Operating income for the third quarter was $87 million compared with $81 million for the same period of 2011, reflecting the lower SG&A.

 From another link/Investor FAQs I learn that the SEC filing is not from its trading stocks, but from its public BOND holders:

Q: What is the ownership structure of Levi Strauss?
A: Levi Strauss & Co. is privately held by the descendants of the family of Levi Strauss. Shares of company stock are not publicly traded. Shares of Levi Strauss K.K., the company’s Japanese affiliate, are publicly traded in Japan.

Q: Are any family members actively involved in the day-to-day management of the company?
A: No.

Q: Why does Levi Strauss file financial statements with the SEC if the company is privately held?
A: We file with the SEC because we have public bondholders.

Just imagine if our own government were that accountable, and we expected such accountability, and collectively knew how to read the reports with intelligence.  But we don’t — we have gone to sleep on the matter, our grandparents (great-grandparents maybe) “drank the Kool-aid,” got hooked on this economy, and here it is.

Suppose we wanted to opt out (as we might for a public traded company that kept losing value) of this investment?  It won’t help to curse the past, but it might help to understand the past, know what stage of development things are in (and who are the agents) — in order to get more than emotional, or politically spoonfed “reading” on the future, by hired hands.

Anyone who is not independently wealthy (not dependent on a job) for the indefinite future can “opt out of” supporting this management of finances by “opting out of a job.”  However, most people cannot.  And the society is entirely structured around the job mentality and workforce mentality, rather than having just as good a work ethic — but not working for this system which doesn’t like to disclose its holdings!

Or those who have the option to opt out of businesses with employees run in the USA or any of its states (which, since at least 1934, must pay into the Social Security fund (per the 1935 & ff versions of that Act), who must register New Hires (with the advent of the Child Support Enforcement bureau that came with “welfare reform” (as I generally speaking, understand, whether 1996 or earlier), so that the state can act as collection agent for the feds in the matter of garnishing wages for child support.  Of course, there is a complex formula, which affects the courts, as to whether or not the States have to actually distribute what they garnish, or when they “can’t find” the custodial parents and declare it abandoned property (or, don’t clear it abandoned property….).  etc.

That’s a LOT harder to do.

IIA.  CAFRs in CALIFORNIA — the Debate after a Citizen Presents the Evidence to various legislators/county officials:

It’s like the difference between a slice of the pizza and the whole pie.  Also see Carl Herman’s work exposing California’s trillion-surplus assets and trying to get a response from politicians (summer 2012):

(CAFR audit, reform: So-called “pension” and “rainy day” accounts are tragic-comic in non-disclosure and non-performance for budget, infrastructure, and pension funding. For example, Californians have $8 trillion in surplus assets withheld by government in this current structure that 1% “leaders” claim requires our austerity (yes, that’s about $650,000 per household).”  (Articles list HERE)

7/2012 Discussion between Walter Burien & Carl Herman about the “legality” of California’s nondisclosure, paralleled to the SEC (what would happen should a PUBLIC traded company engage in the exact same behavior. Includes non-response from Dave Demerjian, Los Angeles County Head of “Public Intergrity Division,” — check it out:

The failure to disclose cash reserves is not a crime unless there is some evidence that official documents have been intentionally altered or destroyed to accomplish the non-disclosure.

He did not respond to my follow-up:

  • Please cite the applicable law(s),
  • please explain how it is not fraud for officials to misrepresent public taxpayer assets by only saying the budget has a deficit and never saying cash and investment accounts have in the case of California 35 times that amount?

Mr. Herman, apparently a Harvard graduate and Los Angeles County resident, I see, didn’t give up when Mr. Demerjian (below) implied it was a mistake, said his office didn’t have jurisdiction to prosecute (suggesting, “try Sacramento”[Northern California/state capital]”) and “this matter is closed.”

Notice in Herman’s response, it mentions 56 courthouses (but only 3 of them family courts) being closed in California (in case we don’t get the connection to “family court matters”).

I think it’s well said.  I feel a little sad that the link to the courthouse closures leads to a Socialist site. I’m no socialist!!– is there no one else who gives a damn around?

From “WASHINGTON’S BLOG” 07/12/2012 (whosever it may be…)

Los Angeles County District Attorney Dave Demerjian responded after my e-mail to him and article:

On Mon, Jul 2, 2012 at 11:04 AM, David Demerjian <DDemerjian@da.lacounty.gov> wrote:

Mr. Herman:

Fraud” is not a crime. In law, the term fraud is used to define an intent, or state of mind, required as an element to prove certain theft related crimes. You have not alleged that any public official stole public funds for their own use. What you describe as fraud appear to be allegations of misinformation. As to any unnamed state officials alleged to have provided misinformation, this office only has jurisdiction to prosecute crimes occurring within Los Angeles County. You may want to contact the Sacramento District Attorney’s Office.

This matter is closed.

Dave Demerjian
Head Deputy
Public Integrity Division

{all the emphases/font changes above are of course mine…}

Dave: the evidence I provided show Governor Brown’s testimony that reduced funding to Los Angeles County (LACO) while saying we have “no options” and lying in omission of $600 billion in taxpayer assets. This lie caused damages in your jurisdiction: Los Angeles County courts face 56 closures, as you know. Perhaps you should research local officials also saying we have “no options” while LACO CAFR shows $66 billion in investments.

There are a lot of taxpayers in LACO, Dave. The bulk of taxpayer assets claimed to be for “pensions” don’t fund pensions beyond a token 4%. That’s like taking a million dollars of public money, giving $40,000 to pensions while keeping $960,000 for yourself, and calling it a “pension fund.” How could you be so confident such a lie isn’t connected to stealing or officials own use without investigating?

Your wording of “misinformation” has a connotation of “mistaken” rather than officials at some levels damn well knowing these hundreds of billions in taxpayer assets exist and intentionally disinforming the public.


It appears (last I heard) the Los Angeles County District Attorney (?) head of Public Integrity Department isn’t interested in any further conversation, at least with Mr. Herman.

Looking up Mr. Dermerjian, I found a fascinating article on a Los Angeles city called “Industry” which (allegedly) while 50,000 people work their as daytime commuters, apparently only has 219 residents (88 of which voted) but which owns thousands of acres outside the city, has a $288 million ANNUAL budget, and in 2009  (through mail-in ballots only) voted to approve borrowing $500 million for infrastructure improvements.  It was discovered that many so-called residents actually lived in churches, invisible (not found) houses, and a factory.

Naturally, this is affecting the neighborhoods, and someone oughter do something about it.  So, here’s Mr. Dave Dermerjian giving approximately the same answer he gave to Mr. Herman above (you really should read the article and decide whether to laugh or cry), from the “Whittier Daily News.”  I also see from the diagram that in 2006, the City Council and another authority (an Authority should show up on a CAFR or have its own) created a third entity, a “Joint Powers Authority” (JPA) which morphed into an “Industry Property Housing and Management Authority” owns the property 4 out of the 5 City Council either live in, or rent.  To me, that all sounds like sticking it to the taxpayers or whoever is going to have to pay off that debt, including possibly tenants.  Hope the tenants are not as invisible as some of the voters’ homes…. That’s a lot of authorities for what was acc. to the US 2010 census (per article) “the third smallest city in the state.”  Seems to me, the real question is who decided to incorporate “Industry” as a city politic at all?


(see next post!)

Written by Let's Get Honest

November 12, 2012 at 11:17 am

One Response

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  1. I see (2013 July) I’m missing some links towards the end of the post. Sorry about that (for the very few, if any, visitors to this post! I have more posts (nearby dates) on this on the blog which may contain them, couldn’t find on quick search. Here’s a link to a helpful slideshare showing Dave Dermejian’s role in LA County’s Public Integrity Division and 8 rules to avoid a visit from the PID:

    http://www.slideshare.net/tolivito/demerjian-public-integrity

    Let's Get Honest

    July 5, 2013 at 9:09 am


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